The Face of Love
By Sissy (sissy@svs.net)

"That's your assignment, class, due in two weeks." The professor picks up his papers from the desk, shoves them down into his briefcase and leaves the room. The students begin standing, talking about the project, and discussing, among them, the best way to get it done.

"Oh, boy, Jill, this isn't going to be easy. I knew this was coming but I'm still not prepared for it. How are you going to do yours?"

"Well, I've already got it figured out, it's just a matter of how to put it on paper."

"Really? You must have been planning for this, huh? What's your idea? Can't you help me out? Please? Just tell me how you can tell if someone's in love. Maybe it's just … you know … lust. How do you know for sure? Or better yet, how do you know for sure how someone feels about you?"

"I've seen it in action, but that's all I'm going to say." She smiles at her friend, picks up her books and starts out of the room, with Cathy following, asking questions that aren't getting answered.

*****

Jill sits in a booth at C.D.'s with a Cheeseburger, fries and coffee on the table in front of her. One half of her project, The Man, is already here, sitting at the bar with his back to her and to the door. From where she is sitting she can see him and the door at the same time. She has been watching him for almost half an hour, and although several people have come and gone, he has not been distracted from his discussion with another man. A very good-looking black man, whom, if she didn't already have a boyfriend, she would be tempted to make a play for.

When the door to the grill opens and the second half of her project enters, The Woman. The man at the bar stops talking, pauses, then turns around on the barstool and flashes a warm smile at the lady who just came in the door, the lady he gave his heart to. Now, how did he know that this was the one he was waiting for? There is no mirror in front of him, so … how did he know? For the next few minutes Jill is busy writing in her notebook. Because he senses her presence before he sees her. Jill watches, albeit discreetly, as the two lovers move to a booth. They touch their lips together softly, then hold hands and talk quietly for several minutes. Then standing and bidding goodbye to the owner of the establishment and to the good-looking black man, they walk out the door with his arm around her waist.

*****

Jill slips quietly into the courtroom and takes a seat in the back, situated where she can see the door and with just a slight turn of her head she can also see The Woman. She is good at her job. She watches intently as she fires questions at the man in the witness chair. She seems to be totally engrossed in her cross-examination. Out of the corner of her eye, she sees The Man slip silently into the room and sit in the back row. He no sooner sits down then The Woman pauses, turns and looks straight into his eyes, smiles at his wink then resumes her avid questioning of the witness. How did she know he was here? She feels his presence just like he felt hers at the Bar & Grill? This is truly a pair of soul mates. She stays until court is adjourned then watches, discreetly again, as The Man walks up to The Woman, kisses her softly on the cheek, then with his hand at the small of her back, guides her through the people and out of the courtroom.

*****

The next week Jill spends every evening at the Bar & Grill watching her two subjects, verifying over and over the same wondrous scene that she had witness at the beginning of her assignment. Making sure what she had seen was not just lucky chance. It was so beautiful to watch, to know that a love as true as this really existed. They had a love that could withstand the rigorous demands of their jobs. They were of two different personalities, which sometimes caused a certain amount of butting heads, but all differences seemed to be resolved before they ever leave to go home.

Jill was jotting notes down in her notebook when she feels someone standing by her side. She slowly looks up to see the owner of the establishment looking at her very intently.

"Miss, can I help you?"

"Ah … no … I'm fine."

He slide in across from her, "Young lady, can you explain to me why you come in here every evening and watch two of my friends like you've been doing? It's starting to look just a little suspicious, the way you watch them then write in you little book there."

"Oh … I'm sorry. I'm working on a class assignment and I'm almost done. Please, I don't mean any harm."

"A class assignment? On the Walker's? What kind of paper would you be writing on them for crying out loud?"

"Its on relationships, not on the Walker's, they just happen to be my models." She pauses, "You won't say anything to them, will you?"

"Relationships? Models? What in thunderation are you talking about? I'll tell you what, let me see what you've written, then I'll answer your question."

She stares at him for several minutes, then reluctantly turns the book around where he can read it. As he begins, she watches his eyes, as they slide across the paper. When he looks up at her, she almost regrets letting him read it.

"Is this the way you see them?"

"Yes … don't you? I mean … I think any one that looked at them would see the same thing. I think it's beautiful. A love like that only comes along once in a lifetime. I'm not saying that love is rare, but a deep abiding love like they have for each other, I think, is very rare."

"Well … they do have a rare connection with each other. But to tell you the truth, I guess I've never thought of it in this way. I've known them since they first got together and I guess it happened so gradual that I just accepted it as just a part of them." He picks up the notebook and reads it again. "You aren't giving any names are you, I see no names mentioned here?"

"No … no names. I wouldn't embarrass them like that."

"Well … I guess there isn't any harm, as long as no names are mentioned." He lays the book down and looks into Jill's face, "But why in tarnation did you pick these two."

"I've seen them together several times and it has always fascinated me, this … this … awareness they have of each other. I didn't notice it either until about six months ago, when that madman came in here and started waving a gun around. Remember that?" When C.D. nods, "The way he covered her with his body when the bullets started flying. I was looking at them when the shooting started so I saw what he did. That was just before I went under the table." She giggled, "I don't think I had ever been so scared. But it was beautiful, that his first thought was for her. Most of the guys I know would have just hit the floor, forgetting about their date. That's when I really started watching them. Then when we got this assignment, they were the first ones I thought of as the perfect example of what love is."

"I'll make a deal with you. If you'll let me read you're final paper, I won't say anything to 'em. Okay?"

"Okay … you got a deal, Mr. Parker."

"When is this paper suppose to be done … Ms…?"

"Jill … and I have to turn it in next Monday. I'll come by here Saturday night with your copy, Okay?"

"I'll be watching for you … Jill."

*****

When Jill arrives Saturday night, she sees Walker and Alex dancing cheek to cheek and from the look on their faces, no one else exists. They are completely engrossed with each other. She finds an empty booth way back in the corner and sits down, knowing that C.D. would be by to read what she had written. Not knowing why, but she's hoping he will like it. She thinks this is the best think she has ever written, but she feels like the credit belongs to the two that made the paper possible. She turns to watch as her two 'Models' dance together.

A shadow falls across the table and she looks up to see C.D. looking down at her. "Hello Jill. Did you get your paper all finished?" he asks as he sits down.

"Yes, I did, Mr. Parker. I only hope you can understand the reason I chose them as my example."

"And what is that reason, Jill?"

"Because they are the only ones that I know that have a love like this. What they have is, to me anyway, very beautiful."

"Hummmp … well, let me read this paper first then I'll tell you what I think, okay?"

Jill hands the paper to C.D. and watches his face as he reads it, but is unable to tell a thing because his expression never changes.

The Face Of Love
By Jill Larson

Everyone has experienced love at one time or another, love for your parents,
your child, a friend, or your siblings, and of course a love for your spouse.
Your soul mate. But I have seen, not found, mind you, at least not yet, a love
that transcends all other. A love so deep, and so strong as to defy all logic. A
love that a man and a woman feel for each other, to the depths of their souls.
The love that this couple has for each other is very beautiful.

I know this love exists because I have seen it. I will not name the two people
that have this deep love for each other, although there are probably many more
out there with this kind of love, I have seen it in this couple. It is a rarity. This
couple I am talking about have a spiritual connection, I am sure. For no other
reason then that's the only explanation I can come up with that makes sense.

I have seen 'THE MAN' turn to look when 'THE WOMAN' enters the room
where he is, knowing it is her. I've watched this happen many times, just to be
sure. I've also seen 'THE WOMAN' do the same thing when 'THE MAN' enters
a room where she is. They seem to feel the other's presence before they see them.

I have seen 'THE MAN' put his life on the line to save 'THE WOMAN'S' life and
I have no doubt that she has done the same for him, considering their careers.

When you find a love so strong that you are willing to die to save your soul mate,
but knowing that when you cease to exist, your soul mates life will be over, too,
then you know you have found your reason for living, the one person that makes
life worth living.

I only hope that I am one of the privileged few that will find a love like this.

When he hands the paper back to Jill, he turns his head and watches Alex and Walker as they dance for several minutes. When he looks back at Jill his eyes are bright, he takes Jill's hand in both of his, "Young lady, you have quite an insight to people, do you realize that? I don't know of too many people who would see what you have. But you have done a very good job of describing those two. Only the few people that are close to them know what those two have gone through to be together, and the Lord willing, they'll have a lot of years together."

"Are they married?" Jill asks softly.

"No, not yet, but soon. Very soon." He turns to look at Jill, "But you keep that under your hat, you hear me, young lady? There's some out there that wouldn't like to see that happen." He stands, pauses, "Jill, would it be possible to have a copy of that?"

"I wanted you to have a copy anyway."

He watches her as she picks up the paper and hands it to him. "Thanks, Jill. You are one OK lady. You take care now, okay?"

He turns to walk away, "Mr. Parker?" When he turns back. "Thank you." She smiles at him and when he nods, she turns back to watch the dancers. When the song ends and the dancers leave the floor, she picks up her books and gets up from the booth. Catching C.D.'s eye, she waves and walks out the door.

C.D. is standing behind the bar reading the paper again, "What are you reading C.D.?"

"Huh? Oh … nothing hon, just a little story about some very lucky people."

The End